It turns out, that being nice to your customers actually encourages them to spend more time and money in your store, a novel concept, I know. But how much of a difference does this make? And how friendly do you need to be, can you be TOO nice? Who knows, I certainly don’t.
So, a long time ago, in a country far far away, I used to go to a local card shop, which is run by a really nice man, and not-so really nice woman, she wasn’t outright MEAN, per se, but she wasn’t exactly… nice. Basically, she was rather intense and a very no-nonsense person, and was swift when telling people not to do things. (Granted, she was dealing with a bunch of teenage boys, so I don’t blame her)
How does this compare to Victor and MJ who are the owners of Moss Eisley? Well, for one I can not tell you how nice it is to meet someone else who plays MTG AND speaks English. I was terrified of entering the store because I didn’t have the right cards, didn’t speak Spanish, didn’t know anyone there, and if it was anything like J&R cards, I probably would not have returned. (J&R cards is not a bad store, but if I didn’t speak the language and didn’t know what people were saying, I would have probably gone to other stores in Viña.) But instead of what I expected, I was met by a man who spoke English, and actually lent us, teenage kids, rather expensive decks, where we could compete, and yes even win tournaments.
Once I experienced this, I definitely wanted to come back. Victor and everyone else there has been so nice, and I think genuinely enjoys working there and playing magic with their friends. Victor is nice enough to try to find cards for a deck that I wanted to make and put them all together. For free. On top of that, he also helps me improve my skills, as Victor was once a professional Magic player.
So if YOU want to run a shop, try not to scare people away, it’s bad for business. Be welcoming and kind, answer questions, stuff like that. Pretty simple really, only be rude to people if you don’t want them to spend time (and money!) in your store.
All in all, the difference that being nice to your customers, in my opinion, makes a huge difference! From only going someplace because it’s the ONLY place to go, to going someplace because you enjoy the atmosphere that has been cultivated. My experience here in Chile so far has been this: The people: so nice. The food, not so much.